Conduct while expecting a period
12 April, 2005
Although I am married almost 20 years, I still struggle with what to do the day or two before I expect my period. I know I'm not actually niddah, but can I continue my relationship with my husband as usual? Is it truly enough just to wear dark underwear and not look at the toilet paper?
On an onat perishah, relations are forbidden, and a bedikah is required to maintain your chezkat taharah (halachic presumption that you aren't niddah), or to find out if you have begun menstruating. Everything else (touching, hugging, kissing, passing objects, etc.) is okay, but it is a good idea to refrain from activity which could lead to relations.
After the onat perishah, if the bedikah was fine, a couple may resume all physical contact, including intercourse. If you suspect you are supposed to get your period that day, common sense would say you should refrain from relations, but there is no halachic obligation to do so. It is also fine, and in some circumstances prudent, to check yourself before having relations to make sure you haven't started bleeding. You can do this by wiping externally with toilet paper, not immediately after urinating, so that if you do find a stain it can be treated leniently and will not make you niddah.
This internet service does not preclude, override or replace the psak of any rabbinical authority. It is the responsibility of the questioner to inform us of any previous consultation or ruling. As even slight variation in circumstances may have Halachic consequences, views expressed concerning one case may not be applied to other, seemingly similar cases. All health and health-related information contained within Nishmat's Women's Health & Halacha Web site is intended to be general in nature and should not be used as a substitute for consulting with your health care professional. The advice is intended to offer a basis for individuals to discuss their medical condition with their health care provider but not individual advice. Although every effort is made to ensure that the material within Nishmat's Women's Health & Halacha Web site is accurate and timely, it is provided for the convenience of the Web site user but should not be considered official. Advice for actual medical practice should be obtained from a licensed health care professional.
For further questions or comments:
The Nishmat Women's Health and Halacha Site is a public service of Nishmat, The Jeanie Schottenstein Center for Advanced Torah Study for Women. This project and others like it are made possible by contributions from people like you. If you have benefited from the service, and wish to enable us to help others, click here to donate.
Users of Internet filtering services: This site discusses sensitive subjects that some services filter without visual indication. A page that appears 100% complete might actually be missing critical Jewish-law or medical information. To ensure that you view the pages accurately, ask the filtering service to whitelist all pages under yoatzot.org.